LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Some Flint Water Defendants: Local Controversy Exception Applies To Class Action

DETROIT - Some of the defendants sued by residents of Flint, Mich., in connection with the lead-contaminated drinking water in that city filed a brief in Michigan federal court on March 21, arguing that the lawsuit meets the local controversy exception to the Class Action Fairness Act (CAFA) and, therefore...

Mealey's IP/Tech - 3rd Circuit Affirms Contempt Judgment For Refusal To Decrypt Devices

PHILADELPHIA - A child pornography suspect was correctly found to be in contempt when he refused to comply with a court order requiring him to provide law enforcement with access to external hard drives, a Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled March 20, finding that the defendant's rights...

Mealey's IP/Tech - 5th Circuit Affirms: No Live Controversy In Patent, Trade Secret Row

NEW ORLEANS - A dismissal with prejudice of a complaint seeking a declaration of patent noninfringement and that no trade secrets were misappropriated was correct, the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled March 20 in a dispute over gas-to-liquid (GTL) conversion technology (Sasol North America Inc...

Mealey's Labor & Employment - NLRB Rules In-N-Out Burger Can't Make Workers Remove Union, Wage-Related Buttons

WASHINGTON, D.C. - In-N-Out Burger Inc. violated the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) when it prohibited employees from wearing unauthorized buttons or insignia that referenced union activity and wages, the National Labor Relations Board ruled March 21 (In-N-Out Burger, Inc. and Mid-South Organizing...

Mealey's IP/Tech - Partial Summary Judgment Granted In Apple IPhone Antitrust Class Action

OAKLAND, Calif. - A California federal judge on March 22 granted in part a motion for summary judgment by Apple Inc., finding that the plaintiffs in a putative antitrust class action failed to establish the primary alleged aftermarket for iPhone voice and data services related to claimed service exclusivity...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Magistrate Judge Allows Testimony On Claimed Process In Patent Infringement Suit

TYLER, Texas - In a patent infringement lawsuit, an expert may provide opinions "based on his technical knowledge and expertise" as to the technical advantages of a claimed process of forming circuitry used in controlling liquid crystal displays (LCDs), a Texas federal magistrate judge ruled...

Mealey's Insurance - Issues Of Fact Exist On Cause Of Collapse And Insured's Knowledge, Federal Judge Says

PEORIA, Ill. - Because questions of fact exist regarding the cause of the collapse of a building's second floor and the insured's knowledge of the condition of the building, an Illinois federal judge on March 21 denied an insurer's motion for summary judgment (WAMFAM5 Inc. v. Nova Casualty...

Mealey's Insurance - Excess Insurer Had No Duty To Indemnify Construction Defect Suit, Judge Finds

DENVER - An excess insurer had no duty to indemnify two insureds for a construction defect case because the primary policy was not yet exhausted, a Colorado federal judge ruled March 20, dismissing a reimbursement lawsuit filed by two other insurers seeking monies for the defect case's settlement...

Mealey's Securities/D&O Liability - Judge: SEC Proxy Statement For Acquisition Deal Was Misleading, Material

PORTLAND, Ore. - Dismissal of a securities class action against a company and its board of directors for allegedly omitting key information in the Securities and Exchange Commission proxy statement for a proposed acquisition deal in an effort to have the company's stock sell for a lesser price is...

Mealey's Labor & Employment - Insurance Groups' Emergency Injunction Motion Over DOL Fiduciary Rule Denied

DALLAS - A Texas federal judge on March 20 denied a coalition of insurance associations' emergency motion for an injunction pending appeal of a ruling that the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has not exceeded its authority in formulating its new "fiduciary rule" and that the new rule does...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Without Expert Testimony, Judge Grants Judgment On Product Liability Claims

HARTFORD, Conn. - Finding that a plaintiff's expert is not qualified to testify about "handheld circular saw safety, the efficacy or necessity of riving knives on such products, or the sufficiency of warning labels" to support design defect and failure-to-warn claims, a Connecticut federal...

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Maryland Appeals Panel Affirms Summary Judgment In Wrongful Death Suit

ANNAPOLIS, Md. - A Maryland Court of Special Appeals panel on March 21 affirmed a grant of summary judgment in favor of the parent and grandparent corporation of a hospital in a wrongful death suit because under Maryland law, parent and grandparent corporations are not responsible for establishing hospital...

Mealey's Insurance - Florida Panel Affirms Court's Refusal To Conduct New Appraisal In Wilma Suit

MIAMI - A Florida appeals panel on March 22 held that an insured's post-appraisal submission of increased costs in a Hurricane Wilma coverage dispute is not a legally sufficient basis to reopen the existing appraisal or conduct a new appraisal (Orlando Noa v. Florida Insurance Guaranty Association...

Mealey's Labor & Employment - ERISA Not The Vehicle For Health Centers' Suits Against Insurers, 9th Circuit Says

SAN FRANCISCO - Health care centers designated to receive direct payment from a health plan administrator for medical services cannot file suit in federal court under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act because they lack both direct statutory authority and derivative authority through assignment...

Mealey's Labor & Employment - 2nd Circuit Rules Against Louis C.K. In Dispute Over Plan Contributions

NEW YORK - Comedian Louis C.K.'s company is subject to the "controlling-employee" provisions in three employee benefit plan agreements and therefore must make plan contributions at the 40-hour workweek rate, even though C.K. worked fewer hours as editor of his TV show, the Second Circuit...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Campbell Soup Trans Fat Labeling Class Suit Dismissed; Motions For Sanctions Denied

SAN DIEGO - A California federal judge on March 21 granted a motion to dismiss a class complaint accusing Campbell Soup Co. of deceiving customers by labeling soup as healthy even though it contained trans fat but denied motions by both parties seeking sanctions (Harold Brower, et al. v. Campbell Soup...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Plaintiffs' Counsel Sanctioned For Behavior During Wage-And-Hour Deposition

SAN FRANCISCO - An attorney representing the named plaintiffs in a wage-and-hour class complaint must pay $7,706.32 in sanctions after acting in an "unprofessional" and "disrespectful" manner during deposition, a California federal magistrate judge ruled March 21, adding that the...

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Magistrate Grants Protective Order In Negligence Suit For Trade Secret Information

LAS VEGAS - A federal magistrate judge in Nevada on March 21 granted a protective order in a negligence lawsuit to facilitate discovery exchanges and establishing a procedure for the filing of documents that include trade secrets and other confidential information pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure...

Mealey's Insurance - Insurer Properly Considered Doctoral Program Requirements When Terminating Benefits

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. - A disability insurer's reliance on a claimant's attendance requirements for a doctoral degree program was properly considered by the insurer when it terminated the claimant's long-term disability benefits on the basis that the claimant was not disabled from performing...

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Colorado Appeals Panel Affirms Summary Judgment In Car Crash Suit

DENVER - A Colorado appeals panel on March 23 affirmed summary judgment for a property owner in a suit in which a woman was injured after a car crash on the owner's property because the state Premises Liability Act (PLA) provides the "sole legal remedy for a plaintiff involved in an automobile...

Mealey's Insurance - California Appeals Panel Affirms Insurer's Restitution Award In Fraud Suit

SAN DIEGO - An insurer is entitled to $37,000 in restitution from a man who pleaded guilty to misrepresenting to the company that nurses he sent to work at skilled-nursing facilities were computer programmers to obtain a lower workers' compensation policy premium, a California appeals panel ruled...

Mealey's PI/Product Liability - Mississippi Panel Affirms Summary Judgment In Premises Liability Suit

JACKSON, Miss. - A Mississippi Court of Appeals panel on March 21 affirmed summary judgment to a mother in a suit where a daughter sued her after being injured on her property because there is not a genuine issue of material fact on whether the tractor was defective or in an unsafe condition (Delois...

Mealey's Insurance - Judge Says Special Deposit Cannot Be Used To Pay Guarantor Expenses

CHICAGO - An Illinois judge on March 22 sustained an insurance guaranty association's objection, finding that an insolvent insurer's special deposit cannot be used to pay the guaranty association's general administrative expenses (People of the State of Illinois, ex rel. Andrew Boron, Director...

Mealey's Litigation Procedure - Judge: Plaintiffs' Negligence, Products Liability Claims Fail Without Expert Testimony

MILWAUKEE - Excluding expert testimony on the cause and origin of a fire, a Wisconsin federal judge ruled March 21 that plaintiffs cannot prevail on their claims of strict products liability or negligence because "without competent expert testimony, the jury would be forced to speculate about the...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Iowa Enacts Law Codifying Bare-Metal Defense, Bankruptcy Transparency

DES MOINES, Iowa - Iowa became the first state to legislatively bar asbestos claims arising from third-party parts on March 23 after its governor signed legislation codifying the bare-metal and component parts doctrine. The law also requires additional transparency in asbestos-related trust filings,...